black power

cry wolf

The world is silent to my tears
Deaf to the plight of the voiceless
Blind to cries for help
When my voice loses its pitch
Decreases in volume
Drowned by the establishment
As I try to breathe
Gasp for a pint of air
Will you recognise my goat wails
My pleas for help from behind the veil of a choke hold
Should a strong uniformed arm over power me
Place my fragile neck in a vice grip
Will you document the proceedings
Just in case the surroundings decide to do me in
Should the most probable occur
Don’t look away
Place your recording on record
As my corpse is placed on trial
Castigated for my dress style
Persecuted because I wore a hoodie
Please highlight my side of the story
Or at the very least
Allow me to state my case in absentia
Tell ‘em I ain’t no thug
When the world ignores my cries
Trying to breath is no crime
Mistaken for resisting arrest
Tell ‘em I have ghetto mentality
I don’t do no fairy tales
I don’t play no cry wolf
I am dying



I leave my land
To live in a foreign land
Unlike my forebearers
I didn’t come here by ship
No shackles either
I flew here
Enticed by a scholarship
In search of knowledge
Intellectual capital
I leave my land
To live in faraway capitals
Lured by material
Entrenching a colonial path
Taught in an alien lingua franca
Forgetting language is a carrier of culture
Forgetting everywhere is overseas
I left my land
In search of an education
Only to return naked
Stripped of my perspective
My identity drowning in the oceans below
Am half the person I was before I left
Though I flew here
Like a free bird
I return with shackles in my mind
Like a caged bird

knox mahlaba
Author – Back From The Dead: The Rising of an African Spirit
Copyright © 2015


They plunge hers wares
Embroil her in their wars
Steal her jewels
Dishonor her name
Misrepresent her history
Little do they know
Material matters not to her
Despite their attempts to rape her soul
Separate her from her offspring
Little do they know
Her children matter most to her
Whether they adorn themselves with beads
Attire themselves with hoodies
Her children matter most to her
Black lives matter
No matter their location
Their pigmentation
A reminder of a mother’s love
Blessed with melanin
Africa is more than a landmass
She is a congregation of souls
A village filled with hope
Black men united
Sounds of blackness
Sisters with voices
She is a survivor
The voice of love
The face of humanity
A resemblance of the supernatural
Knox Mahlaba
Author – Back From The Dead: The Rising of an African Spirit
Copyright 2015



My frame of mind fractured
Am struggling with my mission
Enduring a great difficulty
Living without an anchor
I as a man am incomplete
Needing a piece of a puzzle
Living without you jeopardizing our existence
For without you
Queen of queens
My soul restless like the rustling wind
Wandering aimlessly in a desert
Searching for my resting place amongst thorns
I as a man am incomplete without my woman
My black star on the horizon
My rock of understanding
My oasis
Pillar of strength why do you forsake me
Discard me to the wolves
Leaving me for dead on a dirt road behind enemy lines
Scattering my pleas across the plains
Yearning for a fertile patch
A place to grow love
Irrigate our union with tears of joy
Sending my cries from atop a lonely mountain
Listen to the echo carried by the wind
I as a man am an incomplete being
Save me from wine, women and song
Nubian princess are you there

Copyright © knox mahlaba 2014
Author – Back From The Dead: The Rising of an African Spirit


breaking news

News flash on the screen
Lies on the airwaves
Tear gas clouds in the air
Taste the bitterness in the air
Tired of make believe

They never gonna love us
Truth a bitter pill
Make believe is killing us
Unity the only choice
Being black and powerful the only hope
Fight power with power

All these events
Current and past
Familiar like an old southern ballad
Dixie is a state of mind
Growing in a quiet field of ignorance
Under the shade of Maple and Magnolia
Under the guise of law and order
Lost count of the collateral damage

Marching to a different tune
In another funeral procession
Billie singing the blues
Burying another accident of the men in blue
Black children are still ‘Strange Fruit’

Nothing’s gonna change
Victim mentality bears no fruit
Change begins with you
My spirit stronger than ignorance
Removing bitterness from my lips
Making history

Sowing love with greater accuracy
My kind taking priority
Tired of make believe
Spreading knowledge
My words mightier than bullets

Copyright © knox mahlaba 2014
Author – Back From The Dead: The Rising of an African Spirit



My sisters lonely
My sisters caught unawares
Filling the penitentiaries
Too many brothers doing too much time
Some awaiting trial
Successful brothers fishing in another pond
Sisters fighting for the rest
Unwilling to share
So a few get the ring
Too many single mothers
Far too many frustrated women
Fatigued by the wait
Tired of visiting rooms
Disappointed by the odds
Angry at themselves
For being too damn materialistic
Brothers behind bars because
Nabbed by expectations
Doing life because of the finer things in life
Diamonds and pearls
Whims of women
Vanity tampering with the soul of a community
Single ladies getting their groove on the side
Children cheated of a father for life
The father figure history
Stolen by desire for the dollar
Even though it’s unintentional it is the case
My sisters’ expectations filling the penitentiaries
Clogging the prisons
Blaming playas
Faulting the system
Ignoring the hands on the wheel
Our part in the genocide

Copyright © knox mahlaba 2014
Author – Back From The Dead: The Rising of an African Spirit
Copyright © knox mahlaba 2014
Author – Back From The Dead: The Rising of an African Spirit

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my family tree


Uprooted from Africa
Transplanted on a plantation
My roots severed
Growing in an alien environment
Growing despite the harsh conditions
Tornados, typhoons, tropical cyclones
Flourishing in an unfavourable ecosystem

My family tree as old as the Boababs
My brothers and sisters
Uncles and aunts
Mommas and pappas
All crying a silent cry
Weeping for those we lost
Left hanging on trees
Southern entertainment
I hate trees
Picnics too

I hate trees so much
Yet the tree only has so many branches
Killing a few at a time
Now they plant private prisons all over the show
Killing millions at a go
I hate trees so much
My attitude is destroying me now
Affecting my family
‘Cos I hate trees so much
My family tree is at risk

I hate trees
It’s not the tree itself
It’s what it symbolises
What it produces
The tree is an accomplice
Aiding and abetting in crimes against my people
The ship that brought us here
The gavel that sends my brothers away
The wooden furniture in the court room
The crosses that burn on our lawns
All made of wood
Not forgetting the branches from which nooses hang
I hate trees for a reason

Copyright © knox mahlaba 2014

Author of: Back From The Dead: The Rising of an African Spirit